Ohio State is making a change at quarterback. J.T. Barrett will start Saturday against Rutgers for the No. 1-ranked Buckeyes, head coach Urban Meyer announced Tuesday.
"J.T.'s earned the right to start Saturday at Rutgers," Meyer said on the Big Ten teleconference.
"Sheer production," Meyer said. "Cardale's going to be in a very active part, too. Red zone production, third-down production made the difference. It was a very difficult decision."
Barrett replaces Cardale Jones, who has led Ohio State to a 7-0 start to the season and is 10-0 in his career as a starter, but has underperformed in 2015.
The move comes after Saturday's 38-10 win over Penn State in which Barrett replaced Jones in the second half. Barrett gave Ohio State a much-needed spark and finished the game with 102 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 11 carries while also going 4-for-4 passing for 30 yards and a pair of scores. Jones was just 9-of-15 through the air against the Nittany Lions for 84 yards.
Barrett had primarily been used as Ohio State's red zone quarterback over the last two games after the Buckeyes struggled to get into the end zone in that department. Ohio State is 12-for-12 in the red zone the last two weeks with 11 touchdowns.
Through the first seven games of the season, Jones has completed 62 percent of his passes and thrown for 1,242 yards with seven touchdowns and five interceptions. Barrett has completed 61 percent of his passes and thrown for 249 yards with four touchdowns and two interceptions.
The Buckeyes travel to Rutgers 8 p.m. Saturday.